CHARLOTTE – Five-time Pro Bowl center Ryan Kalil has signed a two-year contract extension through the 2018 season.
Kalil's previous contract, a five-year extension signed in 2011, was set to expire following the 2016 season.
"This extension gives Ryan a chance to finish his career in Carolina, which I think is tremendous," head coach Ron Rivera said. "It also keeps continuity on the offensive line. Ryan is a leader on this football team and he's a man of tremendously high character, the type of guy you want in the locker room."
A second-round draft choice out of Southern California in 2007, Kalil has been a stalwart up front since becoming a full-time starter in 2008. He made the first of three consecutive Pro Bowl appearances in 2009 and made his fifth Pro Bowl in seven years this past season after helping the Panthers lead the NFL with a franchise-record 500 points.
Since 2008, the Panthers lead the NFL with 17,621 rushing yards. Kalil is a key cog for a Carolina offense that has produced a team-record 27 consecutive regular season games with at least 100 rushing yards, the longest active streak in the NFL.
Outside of a foot injury that landed Kalil on injured reserve after five games in 2012, he has missed just one game since 2009.
Kalil has been a captain each of the past three seasons, all of which have produced NFC South titles for Carolina. He was the definition of a steadying influence in 2014, when the Panthers overcame turnover everywhere else on the line to right the ship and return to the playoffs.
"Ryan is still playing at an extremely high level and was very deservedly an All-Pro again in 2015," general manager Dave Gettleman said. "The other part of this is that Ryan is a great leader. In 2014, he was instrumental in keeping that offensive line group together. That group had a lot of young players and there were moving parts because of injuries, but Ryan helped them maintain their confidence, and that was a big part of us winning five of our last six games.
"On and off the field, Ryan is a pro's pro, and we're all very excited about this."
View photos of center Ryan Kalil throughout his NFL career.